The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test: Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo – Season 1, Episode 9

Hae-Soo began to fear for the future on Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo, episode 9, and as her fears grew more profound, her behavior noticeably changed causing concern amongst some of the princes.

The Bechdel, Russo, and Race Test

Episode 9 passed the race test but it did not pass the Bechdel or Russo test.

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Queen Yoo slaps her son due to his failure to head the rain ritual.

The cast of episode 9 was entirely Asian and none of the characters ever mentioned White individuals. There were thus many instances where non-White individuals talked to each other without mentioning anyone White so the episode easily passed the race test. However, while episode 9 effortlessly managed to pass this one diversity test, the same cannot be said of others like the Bechdel and Russo.

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So begs Hae-Soo not to abandon him.

Episode 9 did not pass the Bechdel test, and the episode did not pass this test because while there were a few named women in episode 9 and there were a few instances where some of these women talked to each other, there was never an occasion where two or more named women talked to each other without mentioning men.

Episode 9 also failed to pass the Russo test, and the episode did not pass this diversity test because there were no LGBTI characters in episode 9.

*The Bechdel test entails three requirements:
1. It has to have at least two (named) women in it
2. Who talk to each other
3. About something besides a man

**The Vito Russo test entails three requirements:
1. The show contains a character that is identifiably lesbian, gay, bisexual, intersex and/or transgender
2. The character must not be solely or predominately defined by her sexual orientation, gender identity and/or as being intersex
3.The character must be tied into the plot in such a way that her removal would have a significant effect

***The race or people of color (POC) test has three requirements:
1. It has two people of color in it
2. Who talk to each other
3. About something other than a White person

****Just because a show passes the Bechdel, Russo and race test does not mean that it is not sexist, heterosexist, racist and/or cissexist, etc. The Bechdel, Russo and race test is only a bare minimum qualifier for the representation of LGBTI individuals, women and people of color in television. The failure to pass these tests also does not identify whether the central character was a woman, a person of color or a LGBTQI individual and it does not dictate the quality of the show.

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